Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School - Language and Volunteer Programs

Location: Guatemala: Quetzaltenango, Xela

Program Duration: 1-2 Weeks, 2-4 Weeks, 5-8 Weeks, 9-12 Weeks, 3-6 Months, 7-12 Months

Dates: Throughout the year

Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School


3736 SE Salmon St Portland, OR 97214 United States

Call Us

Phone: 971-238-0622


Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School provides intensive one-on-one Spanish instruction. In addition, we sponsor half and full-time social volunteer programs for our students in education, health care, agriculture, rural development, journalism, and more. A Medical Spanish program (human and veterinary) is also available for medical students who wish specialized vocabulary and clinical experience. Other extras include cultural activities, trips, speakers, and optional general or technical conversation practice.


Volunteer Projects:
Teach primary school in Spanish, teach secondary school, work on a fruit and coffee plantation, plan rural development projects, work as a photojournalist, and more.

Medical Spanish:
Medical students may participate in our Medical Spanish program and gain valuable practical experience working in rural clinics and mobile excursions to rural communities to provide health care. Veterinary students may work at a clinic or shelter.

Optional Specialized Conversation:
Students may team up with a Guatemalan professional or specialist in their field of work or interest. This is in addition to the extensive conversation, grammar, reading, and writing provided in the intensive Spanish program.

Live with a Guatemalan family and participate in family activities. We only place one student with each family (except for couples or families who request to stay together) so that you have a total immersion experience.

Visit rural communities, go to large open markets, visit a glass blowing factory, swim at the beach, and more. There is an activity almost every afternoon of the week and every weekend (specific activities vary depending on when and how long you attend). Hear speakers talk about the cultural and political realities of Guatemala. Cook Guatemalan food, learn to dance salsa.

Degree Level



Most of our volunteer positions require at least an intermediate level of Spanish so that the student can communicate effectively, although we have some positions that beginners can participate in also. Students with less than the necessary level can enter into a volunteer position after improving their Spanish at our school. Most positions also require a two week or one month minimum participation. Qualifications needed vary with the position medical background for the clinics, teaching experience for education projects, photography experience for photojournalism, etc. We don't have specific entrance requirements, but students are placed according to their abilities and interests and our assessment of where they will have a successful and beneficial experience.

  • Spanish

Languages Used as a Medium of Teaching
  • English
  • Spanish

Cost in US$:

USD150 per week

Cost Include Description:

25 hours of private one-on-one Spanish instruction per week, homestay with a Guatemalan family (all meals provided), activities in the afternoons and weekends (except for bus fare and food eaten out on these trips, which is very inexpensive). No additional cost for involvement in volunteer projects. Continuation in a volunteer project after studies will cost USD35/week for the homestay or student can secure their own housing and meals if they prefer.

Credit Available


Our volunteer positions are generally in very poor rural areas where it is not possible for the people to provide monetary compensation, although the personal satisfaction you receive will be great.
Volunteer Types
  • Agriculture
  • Arts
  • Building & Construction Projects
  • Business
  • Childcare & Children
  • Community Centers
  • Community Development
  • Public Health
  • Computer Training
  • Conservation
  • Culture
  • Eco-Tourism
  • Economic Development
  • Education
  • Environment
  • English Teaching
  • Gender Issues
  • Grassroots Organization
  • Special Needs
  • Health
  • Health Care
  • Health Education
  • Hospital
  • Human Rights
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Medicine
  • Microfinance
  • Nursing
  • Nutrition
  • Organic Farming
  • Orphans
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Public Policy
  • Reforestation
  • Disaster Relief
  • Counseling
  • Senior Citizens
  • Small Business Development
  • Social Work
  • Renewable Energy
  • Street Children
  • Teaching
  • Tourism
  • Translation
  • Driving
  • Tree Planting
  • Tutor
  • Volunteer Management
  • Water Projects
  • Wildlife
  • Women
  • Youth
  • Youth Development
Typical Volunteer
Our volunteers not only want to improve their Spanish, but they are very committed to improving the lives of the people of Guatemala and Latin America. Their interests vary, from agriculture to education to health care and more. Our volunteers in the Medical Spanish program are usually pre-med, medical, nursing, or veterinary students who wish to gain practical experience working in rural communities. Many are able to receive credit for a medical rotation after participating in our program.
Age Range
5 - 100
This Program is open to

Worldwide Participant. This Program is also open to Families, Couples and Individuals.

Typical Living Arrangements
  • Home-stays

Participants Travel to Guatemala


Application Process Involves
  • Written Application
Typically The Application Process Time is
same day
Post Services Include
  • Job and Internship Network
Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School's Mission Statement

Miguel Angel Asturias Spanish School, named after Guatemala's Nobel Prize-winning novelist, is owned by a group of experienced Spanish teachers in Quetzaltenango Guatemala. Oriented towards excellence in speaking and understanding spoken Spanish, it also seeks to impart an awareness of the social, political, and cultural realities of Guatemala and Latin America.

Year Founded